Leadership with the Dryden GM Ice Dogs say they’re still hoping to return to the ice as soon as possible.
During February 11’s Board of Governors meeting, it was announced that the league will remain in a holding pattern until hearing what Ontario decides to do with stay-at-home restrictions (set to end February 16).
Depending on the level of COVID-19 restrictions in place in northwestern Ontario,competitive sports may or may not be allowed. If the area is placed into Red-Control or Grey-Lockdown, games wouldn’t be allowed.
Late Friday afternoon, Ontario announced northwestern Ontario would be placed into the "Yellow-Protect" level of restrictions, which does allow competitive sports. The Superior International Junior Hockey League (SIJHL) has yet to comment since the update.
The SIJHL announced a ‘pause’ to their season last month, affecting the Ice Dogs and Kenora AAA Thistles, Red Lake and Fort Frances, and teams in Thunder Bay,.
The SIJHL had previously announced that the Wisconsin Lumberjacks and Thief River Falls Norskies would be pausing their 2020-2021 SIJHL seasons due to COVID-19 and border restrictions.
League leadership stressed their season is still considered paused; not cancelled. Before the pause, teams took part in exhibition games and 4 teams were able to take part in 4 regulation games each. The Ice Dogs and Kam River Fighting Walleye were leading the league with a 3-1 record.
The Lumberjacks were one of two new teams added to the SIJHL this year along with the Fighting Walleye. The Kenora AAA Thistles along with the U16 and U18 Thunder Bay AAA Kings would later be added to the league as they couldn’t take part in Manitoba’s league.
For more information:
Ice Dogs, Thistles affected by SIJHL’s pause
Ice Dogs president welcomes Thistles